The largest US deployment into Europe since the Cold War, US tanks and armored vehicles fired shells into the night in Poland as part of what officials have long presented as a NATO training exercise, but which they are increasingly conceding is more than that.
Russian officials had complained the deployment was a threat, and it very much sees it as one, and that’s definitely the point, as NATO officials now present the deployment as a “show of force” against Russia, and prove of America’s military commitment to Eastern Europe.
This deployment just adds to the large number of Western troops being deployed along the Russian frontier, with the US, Britain, France, and Germany also planning a more permanent deployment across the Baltic States on top of that as a “spearhead” force against the Russians.
While there is considerable hope within Russia that President Trump’s talk of normalization of ties will shift the focus away from such buildups and such bellicose actions in the future. At the same time, much of NATO has been pressing Trump intensely to stay the course on the buildup, and to keep Russia at arm’s length.